An SSD that can be remotely controlled by an Android or iOS smartphone and encrypts all data backed up to it is being touted in a Kickstarter crowdsourcing campaign.
SoSecure, the company that invented the 2.5-in solid state drive, said the drive combines 256-bit encryption and low-energy Bluetooth with an Android/iOS application.
The SoSecure app monitors the SSD's battery level, data backup progress, and the last backup date and allows users to instantly lock the drive to deny outside access to data on it.
The SoSecure SSD uses hardware-based, 256-bit AES encryption to secure the data. The drive is FIPS 140-2 level 3 certified, meaning it meets the second highest standard for government-grade data security.
The SoSecure SSDs in the Zero Touch Backup station. The station changes color to indicate the progress of the drive. The app monitoring and controlling the backup can be seen on the smartphone (Image: SoSecure).
The SSDs, which will initially come in 64GB capacities, are expected to be sold in a variety of colors and materials, from aluminum and plastic to oak. You can even purchase an SSD with a carbon fiber case.
The SATA II connector on the SSD is also used to connect to a docking station that automates the backup process. Two of the SoSecure SSDs can be docked in the company's Zero Touch Backup (ZTB) station, which allows the transfer of data from one drive to the other. SSDs can be designated as "primary" or "secondary" drives. The secondary drive is automatically backed up from the primary drive.
The docking station first checks to ensure authorized SSDs have been inserted and then displays LED lighting that changes color as backups are in progress and when they're completed.
There is no de-encryption and re-encryption happening during a backup. The data remains encrypted throughout the process, the company said.
The company is asking for a pledge of at least $313 for a 64GB SSD. For $869, pledgers get the ZTB backup station and two SSDs.
An encryption key is created on a new SoSecure SSD, or one that has been wiped, via the smartphone app by entering a PIN that can be four to 16 characters in length. This process takes user input via the smartphone to generate a random numeric digest, which is used to salt the system-generated encryption key. Simply shaking the phone after the initial PIN has been created generates the random numeric digest.
The SoSecure drive has two physical interfaces: SuperSpeed Micro USB3.0 for connecting directly to the computer; and, SATA II , which allows the SSD to be installed in a computer.
When the SSD is installed in a desktop or laptop, a "Stay Alive" feature stops the drive from locking if the computer moves into a phase of inactivity or sleep. The "Stay Alive" lasts for 10 hours after which, if a user needs more time, it can be reactivated again for another 10 hours. The time remaining is displayed above the button and on the main menu bar of your phone.
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